Student ID Number28794
NameYamileth Escobedo
What is your GPA3.87
What high school do you attend? (CHS or CSHS)CHS
Where have you applied for further education?

The University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois

What is your inteded major/speciality?Global Relations
In 200 words or less please explain why you are choosing this major/specialty

After my study abroad experience in Argentina, I gained an interest in global relations. My other interests are business, law and political policy. With a global relations major, I could tie all my interests into one.

1. What are your educational goals? Specifically list your planned major and minor courses of study. What do you plan to do with your education?

Growing up, I never had any role models in leadership to look up to, mainly because of my Hispanic background. What I viewed as possible for myself was being a cosmetologist. But as I grew older, I was presented with many amazing opportunities through my involvement. My perspective changed because of these. Now, I want to make a difference in my Hispanic community. My educational goal is to earn a bachelor’s degree in global relations at the University of Chicago. I gained an interest in global relations from my study abroad experience in Argentina. I was exposed to a different culture and different social issues, ranging from politics to education to public health.
At this time, I'm not sure what my ideal job is. When researching the many possible careers I could have with a degree in global relations, I saw myself working for the government, a large company, or in a different country. It is too soon for me to decide exactly, but as I get further into my major I know I will be able to make a more informed decision.

What extracurricular activities or events have you participated in during high school?

I have participated in many extracurricular activities throughout high school. I’ve participated in Student Council and TRIO Upward Bound all 4 years. I was also in the Mayor's Youth Advisory Council sophomore and junior year. In addition, I also had the honor of being the chair of the planning committee for the 3rd Annual Young Women in Leadership Conference. Last, I am in the National Honors Society and I serve as a Junior Coach for the Girls on the Run program at Washington Elementary School.

3. What is the most impactful experience that you have had as a participant in TRIO Upward Bound?

The most impactful experience I have had as a participant in the TRIO Upward Bound program was finding out I was accepted to The University of Chicago. I remember the moment I found out I was accepted clearly. I was at work during my break, scrolling down through Twitter, when I saw UChicago’s tweet saying that admission decisions had been posted on the student portfolios. With 6 minutes remaining of my break, I rushed to log into my account. But before I did, I took a deep breath and told myself that I would have to be okay with whatever the decision was. So much anxiety came at that moment. With UChicago being so selective, my hopes of getting accepted were low. When I logged in, the first thing I saw was a status update. The first word I read was “Congratulations.” My heart stopped. I could not believe it. I was so shocked and excited. Tears began to flow through my eyes. This moment I really had not expected, and now everything had changed. Being accepted to this school meant a lot, the recognition of all my hard work, as well as the amount of opportunities I would have attending such a prestigious school, and the change of what I now saw as my future.
TRIO Upward Bound was the reason why I got accepted. This would have never happened without Josh as my mentor. Since freshman year, this program has been my support and guidance. Josh has gone out of his way to provide me with many amazing opportunities, from my first summer program at Boise State University, to attending a leadership conference in San Diego my sophomore year, studying abroad in Argentina my junior year, and now being able to attend UChicago this fall.

Other than financial, what is the biggest obstacle you face to completing college? What resources will you utilize to help you overcome this obstacle?

The biggest obstacles I face are a lack of support and the feeling of imposter syndrome. I have not even stepped foot on campus and I'm already doubting my ability to be successful at the University of Chicago. I have found myself questioning if UChicago made a mistake in accepting me. They have a test optional admission option, and I did not submit my test scores because of how low they are. After looking at their average test scores, mentioning mine makes me feel ashamed and wondering if I would have been accepted if they knew how low they are. Even though I know I have a strong work ethic and I've worked hard in all I’ve done, there still comes a sense of feeling like luck was on my side.
With minimal education, my parents were never afforded any of the opportunities I’ve had. Their lack of experience poses a constant challenge. They support me in as much as they can, but they truly don’t know how to. Especially being away from home, my support system at UChicago will be minimal at first.
I will have to find my own ways to overcome these challenges. I believe that the feeling of imposter syndrome is never going to go away for me, but that I will just need to find more confidence from within, and acknowledge that I’ve earned everything I’ve accomplished. With my family being away, my support system will have to be found in Chicago, with professors, mentors, friends and anyone who I can rely on to keep me going.

5. What will it mean to you to be the recipient of The Opportunity Fund?

I’m in a classroom where everyone is deserving of this scholarship. It is a recognition of all the amazing work that we have put into TRIO Upward Bound during the time we have been in the program. This is why being a recipient would mean so much to me. It would be such a great honor and recognition. It would give future students a person to look up to. I would be a part of the legacy that is being built with the foundation of this scholarship. I want to be part of that legacy because TRIO Upward Bound has played such an important part in my life. It is truly the reason why I’m pursuing college success in the first place. Since my freshman year in TRIO Upward Bound, I have taken advantage of all of the opportunities offered. Every event or activity I participated in, I enjoyed and saw growth in myself. Receiving this scholarship would be a recognition of all that TRIO Upward Bound continues to invest in me and what I’ve done throughout to show my desire to be another success story for TRIO.

6. To what organizations or events have you offered service during high school? What was the most rewarding volunteer experience that you have had, and why?

I’ve offered service to the Mayor's Youth Advisory Council, Student Council, and Girls On The Run. The most rewarding volunteer experience that I’ve had was volunteering as a Junior Coach for Girls On The Run. I came into the program and saw a lot of shy girls with low self esteem.
My first time volunteering, I met a girl named Jasmine. She was a 5th grader, and the first impression I had of her was that she didn’t like it when others talked to her. She was mean and did not get along with the others. She never wanted to make any sort of connections with anyone. But she still kept showing up, so there had to be something about the program that she enjoyed. As the program continued, her shell began to crack, little by little. I would make it a mission to say hi to her everyday, and during the activities I would always include her. She began to participate more, make friends, and smile more often. She would even come up to me and ask if I could be her partner for the activities or run with her.
This was a huge surprise for me. When I first approached Jasmine, she would tell me she wanted to be alone and to go away. But it was now the opposite. By the end of the program, she was a completely new person. I felt like sharing my time with these young girls was worth it, I took part in helping Jasmine be more confident, friendly and kind.

7. How do you plan to fund your post-secondary education? If you have worked during high school describe what you have done.

The cost of attendance for The University of Chicago is $77,000. Through institutional and federal aid, I’ve received $69,000. This does not include an expected summer work commitment of $2,000 and being offered $3,000 in work study. With my work study job, I will not have the money upfront. Instead, it will be earned during the year. As you can see, I am very close to fully funding my post-secondary education. However, I need a little more support to help reach this goal.
I’ve worked since I was a freshman in high school, starting with being a waitress at my aunt’s restaurant to my current job as a counter help employee at Panda Express. Over the past few years, I’ve been able to provide for myself and not have to be a financial burden on my parents. However, because of my involvement and my family’s financial situation, I have not been able to save much of the money I have earned for college.